Last week I received £40 in cash for taking part in a 1.5 hour focus group discussion on grocery shopping. There were drinks and biscuits and even jelly babies too, to help keep the chat flowing!
This was easy money, I simply sat with 6 other people whilst a couple of researchers asked questions about where and how we shopped. It was completely relaxed with no pressure to do anything other than give our opinions, and quite fun to be honest, it was a nice group and it’s quite interesting to hear a bit about how other people live – to me anyway, but then I’m
nosy curious about people…
I’ve posted previously about making money as a paid participant in academic research, but there are also a number of organisations who host focus groups and the like more for market researcher purposes, where a particular shop or brand is interested in finding out more about customers. So how do you get involved?
As with anything of this nature, you’ll need to sign up and fill out some profile information so they can select the kind of people they’re targeting. I’ve listed my favourite companies below. You will typically be emailed with details of opportunities you may be suitable for and asked to answer a few more questions around the subject of the research.
I see opportunities come up at lots of different dates and times so there’s likely to be something for everyone at some point. Sessions are almost always recorded (audio or video) so make sure you’re comfortable with that if you want to sign up, and obviously you must be happy talking in front of people and giving your opinions.
I’ve done 3 or 4 of these over the past couple of years on food, clothes and charitable giving, earning £40 – £75 each time for up to 2 hours involvement. Unfortunately you can’t get a regular income from this as the research companies only like people doing them every 6 months or so, and how many invites you get will of course depend on how well your profile fits what they’re looking for. So it won’t make you rich but it’s certainly a lovely little boost when you do get one! Here are some of the companies I use…
This is who my session last night ran through and you can sign up here. They are well organised and friendly, and you will usually be paid in cash at the end of the session.
These have lots of projects all over the country, usually paid in cash at the end of the session. You can sign up here http://www.researchopinions.co.uk/sign-up/ see some of their upcoming projects here which gives you an idea more generally
I’ve only done an online study with these, which I could do in my own time and received payment by Amazon voucher. I don’t think they do many ‘in-person’ groups in the north but once signed up and logged in you can see all their opportunities and there are LOTS in London and the surrounding areas. You can sign up here.
There are more, others which I haven’t yet tried myself but am now signing up with after hearing them recommended by fellow attendees include People for Research, Rocket research and The Consumer Panel.
So go, sign up, talk, get paid!